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 A To Kill a Mockingbird essay I wrote last night -_-

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Soulpaladin

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PostSubject: A To Kill a Mockingbird essay I wrote last night -_-   Sat Feb 26, 2011 12:48 pm

Imagine, you’re in a small town during the great depression. This small town is in Alabama where the heat scorches your back. Also where racial injustices are common and wisdom is a common trait amongst the elderly. This is where a story takes place of epic proportion; this story is To Kill a Mocking Bird, written by Harper Lee. In this great story I had the pleasure of reading was many valuable life lessons. Lessons such as courage, taking an unpopular stand, and even growing up. But the greatest of these life lessons was Empathy.
Empathy is defined as the intellectual identification with or vicarious experiencing of the feelings, thoughts, or attitudes of another. It’s very important to our daily lives as it allows us to connect with people by seeing things through their perspectives. In the book To Kill a Mocking Bird there were many such occasions where this was the theme of that particular part in the book. One example of this was when Scout was upset with Miss Caroline because it seemed she disliked her on the first day of school. When she confronted Atticus about this he told Scout that she needed to understand Miss Caroline’s feelings and that the only way she could do that was to “Climb into their skin and walk around in it.” Now he wasn’t being literal when he said to do this. It was a form of symbolism which just meant you should look at things from their perspective. This is how empathy was first introduced to this story. Not so far later in the story empathy was mentioned again when Scout asked why Burris Ewell only attends 1 day of school every year. Atticus then again being all so knowledgeable told Scout about Burris’s background. During this Harper Lee indirectly makes you the reader think from Burris’s perspective. This in my opinion was to further push the introduction of the Empathy theme onto the reader and to get them to possibly apply this theme to real life. An example from my actual life was one time in elementary school I got to teach the class for a day. I was so excited but my fellow classmates were rude to me and I could never get a word out and they wondered why I was mad at them the rest of the week. If only they had empathy for me things would have been much easier and we probably would’ve been buddies and probably got to share crayons again.

Later in the story Harper Lee tries to now further develop the theme. This time she tries to push the fact that it’s best to show empathy even if you don’t want too. This was shown in the story when Jem invited Walter Cunningham over to his house to eat lunch because Walter was going to go the day without lunch. Scout was going to beat him up before this but Jem stopped her. This was expressed in the story as “I (Scout) stomped to chase him (Walter) away, but Jem put out his hand and stopped me.” This trying to chase him away symbolized the fact she didn’t really like Walter. But Jem’s act of kindness shows that he was showing empathy even though he didn’t really know him or was buddies with him. In other words he wanted to feed Walter because he knew that if he was starving he would want someone to offer him something to eat. This reminds me of a time once when I was young I had to play with my younger cousin because my mom made me. At first I didn’t want to but after I played with him I had fun and realized that I wasn’t forced to play with him because my mom was being mean but rather because he had no one else to play with. In the same situation I would have wanted someone to show me some empathy and play with me. This is what I think Harper Lee was trying to get across show empathy because it’s the right thing to do not because you have to.
Lastly the last thing I think Harper Lee tried to get across with Empathy was that those who do not show empathy are worse than the ones that need it. In the story while Jem, Scout, and Walter are eating at Jem’s house Walter pours syrup on all his food. Scout of course finds this weird and criticizes his eating habits making Walter feel highly uncomfortable. Calpurnia immediately asks Scout to come into the kitchen with her and she gets on to Scout about how rude and wrong that was of her. She utters these words which is a major hint or foreshadow to this theme “Yo’ folks might be better’n the Cunninghams but it don’t count for nothin’ the way you’re disgracin’em” this is basically saying that without showing some empathy your lower than they are even if you are better than them. One specific example from my life which is a really good one is me bragging. I remember I once thought I was better than this kid because I made better grades than him. So I would constantly brag and he would say nothing to me about it absolutely nothing. One day I was bragging and a teacher overheard me. She told me straight to my face “If you really are better than him, you sure aren’t acting like it.” Of course I didn’t understand back then but now as I look back at that moment I really wasn’t better than him. I showed no empathy towards him and even worse I bragged about how much better I was. I was despicable and that was wrong of me. This is what I think Harper Lee is trying to get across.
In my opinion I am eternally grateful for Harper Lee’s life lesson on empathy. I think I will never look at the world the same again. In my opinion Empathy is the most important life lesson. Without having some form of it in us we lose our humanity. If only the whole world had such a great understanding of empathy as Harper Lee did, we would all be able to coexist peacefully. Empathy is the greatest gift anyone can give. So please I encourage you be empathetic of others. As the words of Harper Lee’s characters ring in my ears once again “(Scout) Atticus, he was real nice….” “(Atticus) Most people are, Scout, when you finally see them…”



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Akayame

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PostSubject: Re: A To Kill a Mockingbird essay I wrote last night -_-   Wed Mar 09, 2011 10:41 am

i really liked to kill a mocking bird and i think that empathy is defiantly the main theme there. the excerpts from the story and your personal experiences were great. my fav part was, "we probably would’ve been buddies and probably got to share crayons again" xD

idk if you wanted grammar suggestions.... i only saw like 1 or 2 punctuation changes i'd make and i think there was a run-on sentence in there. but if you're anything like me, it was due this morning ^-^'

definitely an awesome essay, gj! ;D
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PostSubject: Re: A To Kill a Mockingbird essay I wrote last night -_-   Wed Mar 09, 2011 4:32 pm

Thankies aka and actually that was just the rough draft I had to edit my grammar mistakes so yea it's fine now Smile
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PostSubject: Re: A To Kill a Mockingbird essay I wrote last night -_-   Tue Aug 26, 2014 11:49 pm

How the heck did this get so many views?

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PostSubject: Re: A To Kill a Mockingbird essay I wrote last night -_-   Tue Aug 26, 2014 11:57 pm

Lol must be all the other middle or high school students searching online for an essay and got here at some point.
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